Enlisting Under Christ’s Banner

By Shane Lems - Posted at The Reformed Reader:

This is not a phrase that many modern Christian authors use: “Enlisting under Christ’s banner.” However, Christian authors and theologians in the past have used this theme quite a bit. It is a biblical theme. Christians are called “soldiers of Christ” who have been “enlisted” to serve in his army (2 Tim. 2:3-4). Paul sometimes called his helpers “fellow soldiers” (Phil. 2:25; Philemon 2). Following Jesus is a “good fight of faith” in which we need the “whole armor of God” so that we can fight spiritual battles and be “more than conquerors” through Christ our Captain (1 Tim. 6:12; Eph. 6:11ff, Rom. 8:37). This is why Reformed theology calls Christ’s church on earth the “church militant.” This theme also shows up in some hymns; I like “Soldiers of Christ Arise.”

While studying this theme, I found some very helpful quotes from those who have enlisted under Christ’s banner before us. (I apologize for not listing all the complete sources; I simply forgot to write down each one when I was studying. If someone really wants one, let me know; I’ll dig it up.)
“Jesus was nailed to a tree for our sakes, so that he might set up a banner for all ages through his resurrection” (Ignatius).
Before Augustine was converted, he said that he “refused to fight under the Lord’s banner.”


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